All Saints and St Mary’s have always had the one vicar for the two churches. They are independent with their own PCCs but have a good working relationship. All Saints ministers to a fast-growing market town and is a warm, open-hearted part of God’s family. The church is open evangelical in character and benefits from a broad range of churchmanship. St Mary’s ministers to a small village nearby and tends towards a more traditional churchmanship.
Our key priorities are to be outward-looking congregations that serve our surrounding communities, welcome newcomers and are representative of our area. At All Saints, in particular, a key challenge is to reconnect with children and families (where numbers have fallen most compared to pre-pandemic).
All Saints website All Saints' Faringdon (allsaintsfaringdon.org)
The benefice is located in the Vale of White Horse in rural south-west Oxfordshire, between the major centres of Oxford (18 miles) and Swindon (12 miles). The Vale is an area of considerable natural beauty and the historic centre of Faringdon is a conservation area. Faringdon has a population of over 8,000, and is expanding rapidly with the development of new estates. The town has a balanced age distribution and a wide social mix, although in terms of ethnicity it is less diverse than the country as a whole. Little Coxwell is two miles from the centre of Faringdon and separated from the town by the A420 bypass; it has a population of about 150 people.
We are warmly evangelical: the Bible is central to our faith and we aim to ‘correctly handle the word of truth’. We do this prayerfully and considerately. Everyone is welcome, regardless of age, background or stage of faith. Our spectrum of churchmanship is wide and we value this breadth. Women and men are equally represented in every aspect of ministry, leadership, welcome and support. With sensitive leadership, we as a church want to grow in both in number and in depth of faith.
We are seeking a leader who is:
• Spirit-filled with a dynamic personal faith in Jesus Christ who will lead us deeper in prayer,
worship and mission.
• A faithful teacher and engaging preacher; they should be excited by intellectual and spiritual enquiry.
• A visionary who can help us discern what God is calling us to do and sensitively lead the whole church forward through any changes required.
• Ability to work within a larger church, which has a diversity of service styles and a broad range of churchmanship, and a smaller traditional church as part of the community.
• Ability to delegate, encourage others to develop their gifts, collaboratively working alongside other team members.
• A heart to reach out to the whole age spectrum, and to work with our Children and Families Leader and other team members to enable us to become a more rounded inter-generational worshipping community.
We pray that our new vicar will display, with humility before God, the following attributes:
• be an open evangelical, who is open to the Holy Spirit and has a vibrant sense of God’s enabling grace.
• have a comprehensive and thoughtful understanding of, and commitment to the authority of
Scripture, whilst allowing freedom for questions and being sensitive and honest in facing up to difficulties in interpretation.
• have a heart for training and development, both of the laity and potentially a curate.
• have a pastoral heart, self-aware and emotionally intelligent, humble, compassionate and approachable.
• have a desire to engage with the wider community, being welcoming to all and having an openness to working ecumenically with the other churches in Faringdon.
Simeon's Trustees, the patron of the benefice of Great Faringdon, is a leading and long-standing Church of England patronage trust, with patronage interests in over 140 benefices in 33 dioceses.
For more information about Oxford Diocese see Diocese of Oxford (anglican.org)
For more information about the application process and for the contact details for an informal conversation with the Archdeacon and with the Simeon's Trustee, do see the attached Information Letter.
Closing date for this post is midnight: Wednesday 4th January 2023
Visit and Interviews: Monday 30th - Tuesday 31st January 2023